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Good news! The Rev. Brad Karelius will be doing an encore presentation of his 3-part series on desert spirituality in the southern part of the Diocese of West Missouri this December.

The Desert Mothers and Fathers of the 4th and 5th centuries have stories that continue to speak to us about solitude and silence, death, grace, and true freedom. Their sayings create an environment that invites our spirit to grow into God’s deepest desires for us.

The first part of the series, Desert Mothers, will begin at St. Philips in Joplin on Friday, Dec. 1 at 6:30 p.m. The Desert Fathers presentation will start on Saturday, Dec. 2 at 10 a.m. at St. James in Springfield, and finally his own desert journey at Christ Church in Springfield on Sunday, Dec. 3 at 12:30 p.m. The Rev. Brad will also be the homilist at Christ Church that Sunday.

There is no fee to attend the series and you are invited to register for one, or all three, opportunities.

Part 1: The Desert Mothers- Mary of Egypt and Amma Syncletica

Friday, December 1, 2023
6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
St. Philips Episcopal Church | 706 Byers Ave., Joplin, MO 64801

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In Part 1: The Desert Mothers, we explore two pioneers of the contemplative tradition: Mary of Egypt and Amma Syncletica. Their experiences living in the stark desert wilderness fostered stories and sayings that can help our spirit grow into God’s deepest desires for us.

Register for Part 1

Part 2: The Desert Fathers- Moses the Black and Anthony the Great

Saturday, December 2, 2023
10:00 a.m. to Noon
St. James Episcopal Church | 2645 E Southern Hills Blvd., Springfield, MO 65804

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In Part 2: The Desert Fathers, we explore two other pioneers of the contemplative tradition: Moses the Black and Anthony the Great. The stories of these two very different men who came to monastic life show us the power of the desert and the desert community to transform lives.

Register for Part 2

Part 3: A Desert Journey in the 21st Century

Sunday, December 3, 2023
12:30 p.m. to 2:30 pm
Christ Episcopal Church | 601 E Walnut St., Springfield, MO 65806

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Father Brad will present his own experiences of encountering the silence of the desert in the Owens Valley in California. Afterward, Steve and Brad will have a dialog about desert spirit places in Joshua Tree National Park, Monument Valley, and Navajoland. This session will be designed to help those who are interested in experiencing their own desert journey, which can also happen in the plains of Kansas and Missouri.

Register for Part 3

The Reverend Brad Karelius is a priest in The Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles, has worked as an Associate Professor of Philosophy and World Religions at Saddleback Community College, and is an author.

Steve Bruce is a spiritual director, retreat leader, and spouse of Bishop Diane.

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